Saturday, February 28, 2009

Mummified Monk

We've visited a few more Wats here on Koh Samui. They are no where near as old as some we have visited earlier at Ayutthaya and Wat Chedi Luang for instance, as Samui has only been inhabited for about the last 100 years. With no ancient buildings to offer the monks on Samui appear to have devised a different plan to pull in the crowds - they rely on the macabre.

The mummified monk is surely that as we view him with amazement. He is the 'Undercomposed remains of Phra Khru Samathakittikhun (Dang Piyasilo) (1894-1973) the venerable ex-abbot of Wat Kunaram, Koh Samui.' He decided to become a monk at 50 and devoted the rest of his life to meditation practice, he had many followers. Apparently his body did not decompose when he died, so his relatives and disciples decided to place his body in an upright position within his casket as requested in his written instruction to keep it as a symbol to inspire the future generations to follow Buddhist teachings. Not sure it inspires me but it is quite something, its the jaunty angle of his Ray Bans that get me.

We were blessed again at this Wat and now have two more bits of lucky string tied around our wrists. I'm not sure when we are meant to take them off, I think we have decided they will all have to fall off in case we lose the luck summoned to us as they were tied.


PMM&L said...

That is just plain old freaky!

axx said...

Yep, old and freaky he is :-)